This is the first of a 10 part story. Be posted for the following.
I looked down at the ground beneath my feet. It was still wet from the melting snow. My shoes were muddy from running through the field. I looked out at the sinking, cold, white sun. It went down, behind the tall buildings in the distance. There was a lone, small, dirty road leading to the city. I started my way down it. I looked back at the field I’d just come out one last time. The pale green tall grass slowly swayed with the wind, except for the crushed grass I’d trampled over when leaving. I was never going to go back there. “No one will ever find out,” I heard. I looked around, but didn’t see anyone. I thought it came from under the shadow of a big, leafless tree by the side of the road. I slowly walked back home.
“Here comes the sun, doo do doo doo, here comes the sun, and I say ‘it’s alright…’”
My eyes opened, my little sister was playing that song again from outside my bedroom door. She did so every morning, waking me up five minutes before my alarm would. I got up and sat on the side of my bed. I looked tiredly at my feet, it was going to be another long and painful day. I unlocked and pushed open my door. I went down to the kitchen and ate my breakfast in silence.
“You good?” My mother inquired.
“Never been better. Bye.” I went back to my room, gathered my stuff for school, and made my way to school. I got there ten minutes earlier than I usually did. The locker area was empty at first glance. I walked over to mine and opened it. A muffled sound caught my attention, and I carefully made my way towards it. I peered around a row of lockers, and there she was, making out with her guy, Luke. Luke used to be my best friend, and I still pretended he was. He knew I used to like her, he didn’t know I still did. No one knew. Except for Walter.
“Hey Hal, how are you?” He turned around and walked over, extending his hand. I smiled and grabbed it.
“I’m great, and you?”
“Oh I’m good, don’t you worry about that.”
I turned towards his girlfriend, “hey Iris.”
She leaned over and kissed my cheek.
A wave of sorrow brushed over me, but I kept it hid.
“Well, I’ll leave you two. I have things to attend to.” I smiled and walked back to my locker.
“Tell me, son, why didn’t you do a damned thing?” Walter was leaning beside my locker, behind the locker door.
“What did you expect me to do?”
“Show that girl you like her, show her you’d be someone she’d like. If you don’t, she’ll always remain with Luke.”
“Okay, I get it…”
“When you talk to Luke, make things up. Claim you have your eyes on another girl. Tell him about all these other girls too, make it sound like Iris isn’t actually that good, just you better do something about all this.”
“Yeah, yeah, I get it…”
“Who are you talking to?” My friend Ezra inquired as he walked over to where I was.
“Hey, hum,” I quickly glanced to my other side, where Walter had been moments before. He’d disappeared, “no one, why?”
“I dunno, you were talking right there…”
“Ah, I was trying to recall what class we were starting with.”
“It’s English class. Anyway, you going to go out tonight?” He leaned on the opposite side of my locker from where Walter had been leaning.
“Well, I’m not sure. Who’ll be going?”
“Anyone who is anybody,” he laughed, “come on out tonight, it’ll be fun.”
“Alright, I suppose I can do so this time.”
When I got home from school, I walked straight passed my parents in the kitchen and up to my room. I shut the door and locked it. I sat on the edge of my bed and looked out of the window. The sun had gone down, but it was still incredibly bright. I fell back into my bed and pulled my phone out of my pocket. I unlocked it and went onto my social media, only to find pictures of her holding that other guy in her arms. She was smiling incredibly wide. She’d been with him many months now, but I still could not shake myself of the spell she’d cast, I was still prisoner of my love for her. I turned the phone off and resisted the urge to throw it against the wall. I wasn’t even going to go out tonight.
I got up out of my bed and stripped myself naked. In the bathroom, I looked at my reflection in the mirror. No wonder she didn’t love me, I was pale and frail. I was unattractive. I slowly turned and stepped into the shower. The cold water gushed against me, chilling me colder than I already was. The burning sensation in my heart came back, and I just wanted to yell, to hit the walls, to break free from this painful and stupid life. The water grew colder and colder. I turned it up to the maximum heat. The searing hot water came as a shock, I wanted to jump out of the shower but I gritted my teeth and stood there.
As I lay down in my bed, I flinched. My back was red, and my skin burnt. This was not comfortable.
“Drowning your pain by inflicting more pain onto yourself will do no good.” Walter was sitting in my chair next to the window. Light was pouring in from the city outside, but he sat just outside of its reach. “Kid, if you want to survive in this world, you have to be stronger than it. You can do so much better than this. Why do you always retreat to your room and cry over this? Get a grip on yourself, and do something about this girl. This week, you’ll go talk to Luke.” He got up and walked by the window. I saw his silhouette walk by, blotting the light out for a few seconds. My thoughts wandered around, and I saw myself drowning, in a stream. My heavy eyelids closed shut, revenge seeded in my heart.
image credit: Logan de Raspide Ross